tv Worklife BBC News December 5, 2019 8:30am-9:00am GMT
this is worklife from bbc news, with ben bland and james reynolds. out in the cold: small firms are denied access to big cash — because the banks think they're just too risky. live from london, that's our top story on thursday 5th of december. a new report says big financial institutions are turning their backs on small and medium sized firms — even though they drive economies around the world. also in the programme ...huawei launches another legal case against the us government — accusing regulators of playing politics.
we'll be live in shanghai. and it's been a hard day's night — but sony finally seals a deal to sell beatles merchandise see you in court: we'll talk to the man looking to revolutionise the way we access legal services. and today as a local hardware shop's christmas video starring a two—year—old has captured people's hearts — and costjust £100 to make — we want to know... are you influenced by christmas video ads? do they make you buy? let us know — just use the hashtag bbcworklife. hello and welcome to worklife. if you haven't seen that video ad james mentioned, it's the nicest thing, i guarantee it. we will show you it later. but starting this morning
we start this morning looking at investment for small and medium sized businesses. they are arguably the backbone of any economy but new research suggests firms known as sme s are struggling to get investment because they are seen as a risky bet by big banks. analysis by the experian credit rating agency has found there are 1.6 million sme s in the uk alone whose lack of financial history has led to a struggle to get investment. and those figures are reflected in research by oxford economics who have found that lending by banks to small businesses has actually fallen by 3% over the past four years despite the economy growing in that time. and its notjust a uk issue because according to the world bank sme s represent more than half of alljobs worldwide and about 90% of businesses. and the lending picture is much the same as the uk with 40% of sme s in developing countries having an unmet financing need every
year of $5.2 trillion in borrowing. with us now is paul malyon, head of data literacy, experian thanks very much, paul. why are small businesses losing out? financial services organisations can see the small businesses we rely on. we ran some research looking at the 4.4 million businesses listed with companies house and found because of a lack of data three and a half million were simply invisible and this is simply because they are new businesses, they haven't filed their first accounts, or they are not listed. do you have an example of a business that has struggled?“ listed. do you have an example of a business that has struggled? if we look at smes across the nation, people like plumbers or builders or small social enterprises are the kind of business is really struggling to get finance. what can be done to try and make it easier for small firms to get the finance
they need? there is two key things, they need? there is two key things, the research we looked at reduced the research we looked at reduced the number to the research we looked at reduced the numbertoi.6 the research we looked at reduced the number to 1.6 million, we are ruling the number into the data to make it easier for organisations ruling the number into the data to make it easierfor organisations but the other thing we'd like business owners to do is get to grips with their own financial information, understand their balance sheet, counts, profit and loss, look at the credit score and look out how they can improve that. engage with us. cani can improve that. engage with us. can ijump in, 1.6 million businesses, huge number but they are speaking with a single voice, do they have the ability to get together to speak with a single voice to outline the problems you describe? a lot of organisations have been supporting small businesses and working with government to try and increase the amount of financial information available to the banks, the government has done that recently and that's what we've been looking at to try and improve matters. let's put the banks point of view for a bit, they were burned in 2008—9, surely they are right to be cautious? of course but what we are
talking about here is not necessarily that businesses are a bad risk because they aren't well run, its just the bad risk because they aren't well run, it'sjust the information hasn't been there for banks to make a clear decision, they will go on the side of caution and that's what we have to try and make sure we get right. paul, thank you. to france now — where a strike over pension reform has brought the high speed rail network and the paris metro to a standstill — and closed most schools. hugh schofield is at a major rail station in paris... hugh, explain the reason that these pension reforms are proving to be so controversial. president macron came to power promising to overhaul the pension system which several governments have dry to reform over the years. it's a very complicated system in the eyes of many, including some protesters, it's unfair. 42 different pension systems
in france and there are big disparities depending on whether you work for the private sector, the public sector orfor one work for the private sector, the public sector or for one of these special sectors like the metro or the railway workers where they can retire a lot younger than everyone else. what president macron has promised is put everyone on uneven setting so the amount of money earned in your working life corresponds exactly in the same way for everyone to pension at the other end. in principle, people agree but the problem is his plans are still very vague and people are reading into his plans whatever they want and there's all sorts of scare stories going around about how people will lose out. that is why there is a lot of support for this strike and why a lot of people are using it as a steak to hit macron with. hugh schofield in paris, thank you, and let's show you the scene on the concourse of another station in paris. this time in the morning, have passed nine local time,
normally be a lot busier but as we we re normally be a lot busier but as we were hearing, something like 90% of high—speed and intercity rail services will not be running in france. as we were hearing from you, about the pension reforms and many seeing this strike as a test of emmanuel macron ‘s presidency today. it isa emmanuel macron ‘s presidency today. it is a day for walking, or cycling. we will do the rest of the building in french. let's take a look at some of the other stories making the news oil ministers from the organization of petroleum exporting countries — opec — and allies including russia are meeting in the austrian capital vienna. they are expected to extend a deal to limit oil production — aimed at propping up prices — which expires in march 2020. oil prices are predicted to come under more pressure next year with record production by the us and weak global demand hsbc is to bring in a single overdraft rate of 39.9% for uk customers from march 2020, as much as quadrupling the rate it charges some customers
who currently pay between 9.9% and 19.9%. it comes in response to tough new borrowing rules from regulators designed to protect consumers and follows a similar move from nationwide building society injuly to china now and telecoms giant huawei has launched a new legal challenge against the us. it's appealing a decision last month to stop us mobile phone companies from using government grants to buy its equipment. it follows a similar legal challenge in may against a ban on us government agencies from buying its kit. robin brant is in shanghai my my goodness, the united states against huawei, what is going on, it's a huge conflict. it is and yet again fresh evidence of the huawei desire to push back, using the legal
syste m desire to push back, using the legal system in the united states for the second time in a year to try and overturn a decision. this one was a decision made by the federal communications commission last week and it means mobile to expand in rural parts of america won't be allowed to use a government fund to partly pay for equipment if they wa nt partly pay for equipment if they want to buy from huawei, the latest evidence of america 's attack essentially targeting huawei, there a bigger confrontation between the united states and china and science from london in the last day or so that maybe, just maybe, the uk government will go the same way as the us in terms of shying away from using huawei products when it comes to 5g infrastructure. the prime minister borisjohnson to 5g infrastructure. the prime minister boris johnson saying to 5g infrastructure. the prime minister borisjohnson saying he doesn't want to prejudice the uk ability to be able to collaborate with partners like the us on intelligence. robin, thank you. let's look at the markets.
asian markets ended their thursday session higher. that's after renewed hopes that china—us trade talks could result in a deal being finalised by the end of next week. that news also provided a much—needed boost to investors following disappointing us data on jobs and the key services sector. let's look at the picture across europe at the start of the session, mixed picture. on currencies, the pound sterling held around its highest levels against the euro since may 17 after fresh opinion polls suggested prime minister boris johnson ‘s conservatives are on course to win a majority of the general election next week which would give him the numbers to push through his brexit deal and avoid a no deal brexit. of course, we have to wait and see what actually happens in the votes are cast. no one has voted yet apart from anyone who has a post about. —— postal vote. now to the us, where the media giant sony has
signed a deal to become official purveyor of beatles‘ merchandise and memorabilia. vivienne nunis in new york is following the story. it's more than 50 years since beatlemania infected the united states. sony ‘s merchandise division has signed a deal with the beatles company apple corps to become the sole provider of the bans branded items for american consumers, t—shirts, toys, even a beatles pinball machine emblazoned with john, paul, george and ringo are said to be among the new product lines developed. stockists are set to include target for over 21 and hot topic as artists unless from record sales thanks to streaming, virgin dice is being seen as an increasingly important source of revenue among contemporary musicians as well as those who have been popularfor as well as those who have been popular for generations. time now for our daily look at some of the newspaper and website stories which have caught our eye. joining me is emily taylor, chief executive of oxford information labs, a cybersecurity consultancy.
welcome to the programme. looks like you are about to be interrogated by two taxmen, really sorry about that. i have nothing to hide, nothing to hide! that's a way to give someone a shock, but let's pick up on the first of the stories we are looking at, in the guardian newspaper. it post traumatic stress disorder, former facebook word, claiming the disturbing content that they viewed while working there gave them some problems which they are now trying to get facebook to take responsibility for. that's right. this isn't the first case that's been brought against facebook by content moderators but i think it's significant that this has been brought in the european union, there are greater protections for employees. but it really casts a light on this world, we like to think that content just magically disappears from these platforms but
some estimates are there are up to 100,000 people involved in getting rid of this content. 100,000 people watching these images? yes, and it's notjust direct watching these images? yes, and it's not just direct employees, watching these images? yes, and it's notjust direct employees, through outsourced companies. there's been a lot of work, it's surrounded by secrecy, a lot of work, it's surrounded by secrecy, a lot of it because i think the platforms don't really want us to think about all of the negative stuff that goes on and some of it is truly horrible and damaging. we were just saying, facebook says we are committed to providing support for those who review content for facebook but let's move on to the next ore, massive switch. christmas, what can you tell us? my goodness, been watching the christmas video from the hardware store in wales. it just shows, you know, if you've got a great concept and its beautifully done, you don't need to spend a massive amount of money. we can see it now, the heart—warming video that
captured, too much to say, notjust the nation but the world ‘s hearts? i made the mistake of watching it an hour or so ago and i have two pretend i was red eyed because i was tired. chopping onions. chopping onions in the office. it made me well up. it's such a beautiful idea, being a kid at christmas. something we are all very serious in our lives, to something to remember and it's beautifully done. the little boy is brilliant. so focused! putting the sign out and doing the little jobs. child labour! of course, that the twist. he is remembering christmas as a kid, we could have this as opposed to the programme. it's one of those things, you know, do people eventually become immune to it because there's so many cute christmas ads, does there come a point they stop being
effective? i don't know, things like this that seem to cut the noise. a general level of noise and i agree with you, we are so bombarded with messages, aren't we? some of us have ad blockers so we are not. but there are some things where you just watch it and draws you in. and that's really what advertising and marketing is looking for. emily, thanks so much forjoining us.|j just realised, i sound like the ha rd est just realised, i sound like the hardest hearted person in the world, i assure you, it did cut through.|j will make you cry later. that sounds like a thread! still to come .. so sue me! we'll talk to the man looking to make it easier — and cheaper — to hire top legal talent. you're with worklife from bbc news. packaging company ds smith has reported increased revenues and profits in their half year update despite tough economic
conditions. they saw profits up 15% against a 4% increase in revenues as the companies looks to be benefiting from the move away from single use plastic. whilst roberts is the chief executive of the company. the world the packaging is changing. how is your company responding to the fact consumers don't want things to be so heavily packaged and things to be donein heavily packaged and things to be done ina heavily packaged and things to be done in a more environmentally friendly way? we view the whole change in retail outlook with its changing shopping formats, it's e—commerce, whether it's the environmental debate, we view this as an opportunity for us. we had a very clear policy for many, many years, about supplying the sustainable packaging solutions, particularly for our fm cg customers and hopefully you've seen in the
results how we are benefiting from this, better quality packaging, less packaging, environmentally, fully re cycla ble packaging, environmentally, fully recyclable packaging, the focus on e—commerce, we've seen recyclable packaging, the focus on e—commerce, we've seen good recyclable packaging, the focus on e—commerce, we've seen good growth and we are very pleased with the increase in margins as well. this is james here, how much packaging gets recycled the christmas? this is the month we are simply bombarded, isn't it? we are very proud that as a company, although we produce billions and billions of boxes every year, they are all recyclable and we re cycle m ore year, they are all recyclable and we recycle more boxes than we produce, we are a net recycler, we take responsibility for bringing the packaging back, making sure it's turned into a new paper and back into new packaging again. and that cycle can go round many, many times and it takes about 14 days to go round so we feel we've got a very efficient, environmentally sustainable solution for our customers. miles roberts, thanks
very much. when it comes to packaging it is important it looks nice as well, often you get kids camping in packaging they are more interested in the box. they much prefer the box, you can give empty packaging, it's much cheaper. that's the most generous christmas conversation. more christmas news on the business page, positive updates from done elm at the home furniture, will be talking about that. you're watching worklife. a reminder of our top story: a new report finds small and medium—sized businesses are being denied access to investment by big financial institutions. the study by experience says many banks think smaller firms experience says many banks think smallerfirms are experience says many banks think smaller firms are too risky to pump cash into. now, there are times in life when you might need legal assistance, whether it be litigation against you, buying a house, or taking out a will.
for any of these situations, you may need representation from a solicitor. but finding the right one can be a daunting and expensive task. in the uk alone, a recent poll found over 40% of people find the task so difficult they don't even bother seeking legal advice when faced with problems. well, our guest, mike roberts, is hoping to simply this process with a subscription—based new app from his company legalshield uk. he says the tool offers users 24/7 access to solicitors that is quite a claim! basically, am i right that is quite a claim! basically, am iright in that is quite a claim! basically, am i right in thinking this is almost like the equivalent of a subscription you would use for netflix, spotify, you know, your utilities, whatever it is, providing legal advice, is that it in a nutshell? there's a couple of key messages, likes butterfly we are not lawyers, what we do is we provide three key essential elements for consumers. we provide accessibility by utilising ai chat bots and today
's technology, it's an affordable model because it's a subscription —based model, paid for on a monthly basis for both yourself and also your family. and the third element is it's also an model, not only is there at the relationship between there at the relationship between the client and the law firm, but the results of the relationship between us results of the relationship between us and our member. how much does it cost? the cost is from purchasing legal defence from an associate, it starts at £19 and that covers both the individual, so take me xd example, me, my wife, my son who is still at school and also my daughter who is under 23 and in full—time education. and if! who is under 23 and in full—time education. and if i had dependent relatives living at home it would also include them as well. what if you run a small business, would it apply to them? at the moment it's a consumer only model, one of the things we are looking for and we will be developing early 2020, is
very much a small business product as well. looking at some of the information about the service, you are reliant a little bit on chat bots. is that right? chat bots are not humans, you could almost find the same information sometimes from googling as you can from a chabad and when you do that sometimes you wa nt to and when you do that sometimes you want to scream can i talk to a natural human? will you get a chance to talk to an actual lawyer? there's a couple of key messages, first of all the ai chat bot is there to answer frequently asked questions, it's put together by both ourselves and also our lawyers so it's got proper advice on it. but the key thing about our service is that it's all based on an app and if i want to speak to the legal team i hit the app speak to the legal team i hit the app and! speak to the legal team i hit the app and i speak to my legal advice team so i can speak to them at any time and get advice and consultations on any matter. human being. right. ifi consultations on any matter. human being. right. if i couldjump consultations on any matter. human being. right. if i could jump in, some disputes, for example if you have a dispute with a neighbour over
a fence, they don't need lawyers, they need common sense, people to sit down together. is this service not encouraging litigation when you simply need a cup of tea? we certainly don't see this as an opportunity to start suing each other, that's not what legal shield is all about. what we are about is about giving advice and consultation so about giving advice and consultation so that our members can make better informed decisions and using your example, james, have those better informed conversations with their neighbour in that situation of perhaps having a dispute over a boundary or whatever. so it's to enable them to understand their rights and share their rights in the way in which we generally go about things, this is not about all of a sudden being interested in suing each other. mike, thank you, fascinating. thank you. i love that concept of a cup of tea. forget judgejudy, judge render. judge james. cup of tea. and a chat. in a
moment, we will run through some of your response to our twitter question. but first, let's turn to saudi arabia — where the state oil giant aramco is due to announce final details of its share sale to the public. it's expected to price its shares ahead of stock market debut in around a week's time. the share sale will raise in excess of 25 billion dollars. but despite the huge numbers involved— the ipo has not lived up to the high expectations of the saudi government. here's why
i think it's the first time we've been treated by a kitchen. so thank you! i think its captured imagination because of the simplicity of it. how many people in the advert, no make—up artist, who did the song? gosh, this is like turning into a pub quiz. can't you sing it? this is the only time you wish away i don't know. i think with these kinds of adverts, they sometimes cut through. it worked, itjust worked, it makes you cry, as we promised, you will have to cry afterwards. you're much too hardhearted for that. and i'm much too hardhearted. it's only the 5th of december, many more shopping days left. that's it
from us for today. back at the same time tomorrow. see you then. goodbye. hello, good morning. the weather is on the turn over the next few days, we are going to lose the frosty mornings, the fog, we will see something much wetter, cloudier, but also much milder, you will particularly notice that tonight and into tomorrow morning. situation is we've got this weather system moving in from the isobars, close together, quite windy conditions developing across the uk. it's bringing much milderair across the uk. it's bringing much milder air from across the uk. it's bringing much milder airfrom the across the uk. it's bringing much milder air from the south—west so temperatures for many of us in double figures. it's the rain that will be particularly heavy across the west of scotland through today. rain edging its way through northern ireland into northern england and across wales, further south and east, a bit of patchy fog this
morning tending to clear away, sunny spells developing into the afternoon but gusty winds, particularly across the northern half of the uk, 50, 60 miles an hour in the west of scotland. maximum temperatures for many, double figures, 10—13dc. through it this area of rain spreading its way south and east. we will see some heavy rain moving into the midlands, south east england, into the early hours of friday but temperatures won't really move very far, in fact for some of us they will rise through the night. we see overnight lows of 11 or 12 or 13 degrees by friday morning. it will come with cloud first thing tomorrow, outbreaks of rain moving tomorrow, outbreaks of rain moving to the south—east, for showers mainly for scotland, northern ireland, northern england in the morning and by the afternoon, those will spread further south and east, some sunny will spread further south and east, some sunny spells. temperatures generally about 10—13d, milder type are turning chillier from the generally about 10—13d, milder type
are turning chillierfrom the north, images coming down to 7—9d. into the weekend, saturday, small ridge of high pressure before this next weather system pushes in, that will eventually bring rain into the afternoon. for most of us, it's a dry and start to saturday, some sunshine, cloud around, rain increasing, rain in north—west wales, dry further south and east, temperature is about 9—11dc. into sunday, we seek the more significant rain spreading its way further south and east, most of the rain overnight but during the day on sunday, these weather systems will bring in more showers throughout the day. that's all for me. have a good one. goodbye.
you're watching bbc news at nine with me, annita mcveigh. the headlines. with a week to go before the country goes to the polls, the main parties push their big election pleges — the tories on tax, labour on schools and the lib dems on business. half of eurostar trains are cancelled as a huge nationwide strike in france gets underway causing travel chaos across europe. we'll have all the latest here and in paris. a warning of ‘hidden' waiting lists as bbc research discovers delays for thousands of mental health patients in england. millions of hsbc customers will face a single charge of almost 40% if they use their arranged overdraft in any of their accounts.